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May 3, 2012 07:47 AM

East Side King, Franklin BBQ, What Else?

My daughter & I will be in Austin in June for two nights. I'm trying to plan our meals. We both enjoy trying new foods & are are pretty adventurous.

We're definitely driving to New Braunfels for Coopers BBQ, we were there a couple of years ago & while we enjoyed the bbq, I fell in love with the beans (if anyone has a recipe for beans like theirs, I'll be your friend forever & buy you a beer while I'm down there!!!) and blackberry cobbler. We might even float the Comal River again.

We were planning on driving to Lockhart to eat at Smitty's, Black's, & Kruez's on the second day, but the more I read about Franklin's, I think we'll hit that first. I know the line fills up fast at Franklin's, can anyone tell me the best time to show up? Also, if we decide to drive to Lockhart can anyone tell me what time Smitty's or Kreuz's typically run out of food? We've been to Black's before but wanted to try the other two places. I don't want to drive down there after waiting at Franklin's only to find that they're closed.

We'd also like to hit the East Side King food trucks. The menu at Shangri-la sounds amazing. My question about East Side King (all the locations) is do they allow minors? My daughter is 14 & it looks like we'd have to go through the bar at Liberty, so that probably won't work. I imagine we'll hit that in the evening for dinner (definitely before 8:00 pm)

That leaves us with one more dinner to plan. I've noticed a board on ramen, that sounds pretty good. I would love a taco truck of some kind also. What food is Austin known for? Is there someplace we really need to try? Our only criteria for that second night is we need to be at Bass Concert Hall by 6:30 or 7:00 pm. (By the way can anyone tell me where the best place to park around there is?) I've searched the Austin boards but nothing really stands out to me.

Thanks for you help! We're really looking forward to our trip & all the good food Austin has to offer.

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  1. i will leave the food issues to others, except to say that , in my experience, you must arrive at Franklin's at least an hour, if not earlier before they open. You might consider take out and go to a nearby park or something to eat. As far as your daughter being a minor, I don't know specifically about Liberty, but my understanding is that in Texas the parents of a minor child can buy them alcholic beverages in a bar in Texas. So, I wouldn't suspect just walking through a bar would be a problem.

    About the BCH. There are several options I would reccomend. One, is that there is a parking garage sort of right behind the BCH just north of the Fine Arts complex. In addition, there is a parking garage a few blocks south of the BCH and to the east is the LBJ Library parking lot. If you park in the garage on San Jacinto, go up and up until you reach the level that says Trinity exit. From that level you can walk out that exit, cross the street and turn right and in about 100 yards angle off to the left and you will come to a side entrace to the hall. Of course, if you arrive early enough, you might find free street parking. Caution: read the parking signs very carefully about parking hours. They can be confusing. Even after working there for 20 years my wife recently got a parking ticket. Here is a link to the parking around the BCH:

    Also, the BCH has a small restuarant, for getting lighter fare, salads, sandwiches,etc. I have never eaten there, however. It might benefit you to get to the hall early, and beat the traffic, and have a light meal in the BCH. Hope you enjoy the show. I work as a volunteer usher there. If you see a "Joe" say "Hey"

    1. I like the ESK at the Grackle, and since the truck is in the parking lot in front of the bar, you and your daughter could grab a picnic table and enjoy dinner with no problem. Enjoy your trip!

      1. Skip the ramen here. You can get much better elsewhere. Where are you visiting from? If it's not a place with great Mexican food and you want something interesting and unique, I might suggest an early meal at La Condesa for your second night. You can try huitlacoche (corn smut) there, and it's delicious - as are most all of their other dishes. You could get your taco fix there, as well.